It’s that time again. I’ve been working on projects around the house these past few days. I’m still behind on my daily poetry. I’ve managed to get approximately 3000 words added to my Camp NaNo project in the last few days, Wisher’s World: Composing an Apprentice. It’s not as much as I would have liked, but I haven’t stopped writing.
I’d like for you all to see another taste of this new book of mine. This time it’s from the middle of the book. I hope you enjoy it. And please feel free to comment on it below. I’ll have the first draft done by the end of the week and then I can work on the revision and edit. After that, it’s on to Kindle for a test run.
“When the nape of his neck stirred as if tiny creatures crawled among the individual hairs, Reibe sent his attention to the other kind of stirring taking place; this one within his mind. The headache which had been rising all afternoon took an immediate plunge to a bare whisper of pain. He knew before he saw her, who had entered the room.
“You asked for me, my father?”
The soft voice so matched the feel of the young giantess from the night of the dinner that Reibe felt vindicated in his assessment of her. Lyroclae eased into a vacant chair a few feet to Reibe’s left. She wore a pale brown gown, and around her neck flowed a stone necklace of the deepest green. It was made of individual stones carved to resemble a linked metal chain. It suited her, he thought.
“Cleone, this is my daughter, Lyroclae.” Kershon’s introduction of the girl confirmed many things for Reibe, as well as created more questions.
Lyroclae dipped head and body to Cleone, saying, “It is most fine to meet you, friend Cleone.”
The soft smile she turned on Reibe made him blush to his eyebrows. “It is good to see you again, young human. Are you still troubled with pain?”
Reibe smothered an inward groan and waited. He knew Cleone would not let that question pass.
“Pain? What does Lyroclae mean, Reibe?”
“Oh, my pardon,” Lyroclae said, putting hand to mouth. “I meant no breach of silence. Truly. Father, I have erred again.”
In that instant Reibe couldn’t help himself. He laughed. This pretty giantess had sounded so much like he did to himself most of the time that it came as a relief to know that he no longer walked that path alone.
“Pardon, Lyroclae. I am laughing at myself, not you.” Reibe bowed his head and turned to Cleone.
“Since I came here, I have had terrible headaches. They sometimes go away after a while. At the dinner here, my head suddenly felt as if it would come apart.”
Cleone nodded for him to continue.
“When the pain got too bad, Lyroclae put her hand on my neck and the pain went away. She was most kind to help me. I did not mention it to anyone.”
“You did this, my daughter?” Kershon asked with obvious pride.
“He was in pain, Father. I could do naught else.” Her brown eyes challenged censure.
“My child, you make me proud.” He held out his arms to Lyroclae and received her embrace as any loving parent would.
He looked to Cleone and said, “She has been working with your mother since our arrival. She wishes to be a healer like her dead Mother.”
Lyroclae’s chin rose, showing her determination to those who might think her untried.
“That is admirable, Lyroclae,” Cleone said. “I haven’t yet spoken to my mother, but we will talk of this, I’m sure.”
“Please, ask her, Father,” the girl insisted.
“Friend Cleone, my daughter would ask to go with you on your trading trip this next time. She wants, and says she needs, to see more of the world and healing practices so that she might become a Master Healer.”
Cleone pursed her lips and rubbed her forehead. Finally, she turned to Reibe and asked with sudden intensity, “What do you think of this idea, Reibe? Would it be wrong to take young Lyroclae with us next spring?”
Reibe’s eyes widened until he was sure they might fall out. “I have no way of judging such a thing, Mistress. I do not yet know what I am supposed to do.”
“Very well. “ Cleone didn’t smile or hesitate. “Lyroclae, do you cook?”
“Yes, friend Cleone. Though, I do not know what you eat.”
Cleone waved away that disclaimer. “Are you a good traveler?”
“I do not know, friend Cleone. How do you mean? I do not ride as your people do. I have not been taught. I am healthy and not prone to illness. I was one of only a few who did not sicken with the disease.”
Again Cleone waved away the girl’s statement. “We can talk about that some other time. What can you do for us that we can’t do for ourselves?”
The question caused Lyroclae’s eyes to narrow and her chin to rise. “I can heal others. I am still learning, but I can heal. I am strong and willing to work, and I can teach others what I know of the Juton.”
Cleone smiled. “A healer is a good thing to have around. If your father and your people agree with this plan of yours, you may come with us, and I will allow you to learn what I know, take you to other healers that I know, and help you learn about humans along the way.”
Cleone reached out toward Lyroclae, palm up, and waited for the young Juton’s hand to seal the agreement. The giantess didn’t hesitate. Her own large palm covered Cleone’s and they shook on the pledge.
Reibe’s felt his head spin with the implications of the trip. He saw the speculative look that flashed across his Mistress’s eyes at Lyroclai’s assertions. He felt certain that his Mistress would not explain her decision to gain another team member. The trading team had doubled in size in one day.
What did Cleone have in mind that she would make this much change in this trip?”